Tips for Longer Form Script Writing
The most effective videos are those produced from a well thought out script combined with lots of planning and pre-production.
One important aspect of the early stages of planning is to consider how long the video should be. Remember to keep your video length suitable to the interest level of the topic. For any product or service it’s important to keep your message to about two minutes. Anyone who’s interested will seek out additional information if necessary, and anyone who isn’t, will stop watching. If you find that your topic cannot be contained to two minutes, consider breaking the video into sections. Two short and sweet videos might be better than one longer one.
So how do you get started?
The first thing you want to do is make an outline of the main points you want to communicate. Make sure the viewer knows who you are, what you do and what makes you different or unique. Keep in mind it’s okay to have too many items on your initial outline or list. We want to make sure you get every talking point or item you have available on this initial list. Once you have your list it’s time to start deciding what is most important.
From your initial list you will now want to choose the items that must make it to your video. These items should be chosen to accentuate the best features and benefits in the given time. Again, it’s more important to hook the viewer on the big ticket items than to give them a complete and comprehensive view of everything. Once you have them they will be motivated to investigate and find out more. Present the most impact pieces of information and allow the view to inquire for more information rather than overwhelming them with every detail.
Now that you have your information outlined, the next step is to arrange it a logical order.
Often times its the first few seconds that will draw a viewer into a video. So we want to catch them right away with something that will keep them watching. Let the first ten seconds draw them in, and the next thirty keep them watching until the end. Start out with something that makes you stand out from the rest, follow that up with more information, keep pulling them in with more, and then wrap up with how they can contact you for more information. This format is tried and true and extremely effective in reaching new and existing customers.
Once you have a draft of the script you can look at how long your script reads when read at a comfortable pace. Scripts that are paced slower have a greater possibility of the viewer absorbing and comprehending the information you present, unless you have a specific reason to have the pace be very fast, slower is better. If you still have more time available after reading it out loud, at a comfortable pace, you can go back to your wish list and add elements you initially left out. And there you have it, a quick look at what it takes to develop a script. Remember, the earlier to collaborate with your video production team the more they can help refine your script concept so your video project will be a success.
A longer form script would be for a two minute promotional spot instead of 30 second TV commercial. The standard script writing rules still apply, know who your target audience is, know what or who you are promoting, and know what your points you want to get across are. With longer form script writing, you can dive deeper into it.
You as the client need to decide if you are going to write the script, collaborate with Jumpstart on a script, or we can write it for you.
If you choose to write it yourself, be sure you know what you want to see on screen and what you want to communicate to your target audience. If Jumpstart writes the script we use a standard template where we have, on one side, a minute mark with images, and on the other, a minute mark with the script. That really helps us get our voice-over or on-screen talent recorded. Then, from that, we know exactly what B-roll we want to see and what demos we have to show. It is the best way of organizing and being able to go through a shoot and meet timelines. It is something to keep in mind if you choose to do all of that stuff yourself. Know what you want to see, know what needs to be said, and keep it within the timeline.